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Unknown Photographer

King George VI of England bestows knighthood on Air Marshall Francis John Linnell on a battlefield in Tunisia, June 26, 1943
Vintage sound photograph on paper
6 1/4 x 7 13/16 in. (15.88 x 19.84 cm)

Creation Place: Africa
Technique: Photography
Credit Line: Restricted Gift of Michael Mattis, Judy Hochberg, and Daniel Mattis, in honor of Kathleen Stewart Howe
Accession Number: P2019.21.625

A touch of old-time chivalry is photographed on a Tunisian battlefield as King George VI of England bestows the accolade of knighthood on Air Marshall Francis John Linnell, Deputy Air Officer Commanding Chief of Middle East Headquarters. The King is touching the Air Marshall lightly on the shoulder with a ceremonial sword as he says, “Arise, Sir Francis.” This is believed to be the first photo ever made of King George VI bestowing the accolade, June 26, 1943.

Sheet: 6 5/8 x 8 1/2

Wire photographs were originally transmitted over phonelines, then later, by satellite. They were first used in the early 1920s. Associated Press became a leader with this. After pigment touch-ups, etc., the print is put into a drum (like a drum scanner). The image gets converted into audio tones that are transmitted. The tones are received and beamed onto photo-sensitive paper. Wire photographs are copies without originals---they are hybrid, transmitted objects. (Britt Salvesen, Curator and Department Head, Photography Department, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, March 30-31, 2022)

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  • Image Dimensions: 6 1/4 x 7 13/16 in. (15.88 x 19.84 cm)

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